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My Papa's Waltz

My Papa's Waltz

by Theodore Roethke

Analysis: Tough-O-Meter

(2) Sea Level

Besides a few stray words, the language in this piece is pretty accessible. It's easy, though, to get sucked into trying to fit the poem into a category – either it's about an alcoholic, abusive father, or it's an innocent, loving memory. We think the hardest part of this poem is realizing that it's a mix between both, and doesn't quite fit into any category.

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